How Nigeria should tie down Arsenal's Saka - ex-Kenya winger Mutiso explains

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Former Kenya international Innocent Mutiso has challenged Nigeria to step in fast and convince Arsenal youngster Bukayo Saka to play for them at senior level.

The 18-year-old has been impressive for the Gunners this season and has stepped up wherever required - be it defensively or in attack.

In 27 Premier League appearances, the youngster has managed to get five assists and a goal.

Having turned out for England's junior sides, the player is still eligible to play for the Super Eagles of Nigeria and the former Mathare United forward has opined on how the West Africa country can convince the player to play for them.

"Remember, Saka is on record saying he is proud of his Nigerian heritage as both his parents came from there meaning he is open about playing for the African country as well," Mutiso told Goal on Friday.

"But Nigeria have to give him assurances of being involved in the first team just like they did to [Alex] Iwobi who has flourished since.

"Remember, in England, the competition is stiff as well, we have the likes of Jude Bellingham who just moved to [Borussia] Dortmund, we have Manchester United's Mason Greenwood and Jadon Sancho.

"Lest we forget, there are established players as well like Marcus Rashford and Raheem Sterling. Nigeria should capitalise on that and convince him to turn up for them."

The soft-speaking Mutiso has also explained how Super Eagles legends and current players can contribute to Saka's move to the West Africa giants.

"We have Nigeria legends who can play a vital role in bringing Saka home," Mutiso continued.

"Remember Augustine 'Jay-Jay' Okocha convinced Iwobi to play for Super Eagles and he can be used as well. We also have his peers like Samuel Chukwueze can also do the job, it is a matter of showing the player how much he is needed."

So what will Saka gain by playing for the three-time Africa Cup of Nations champions?

"Unconditional love by the fans is one thing he is assured of, it will be limitless as we have seen with Iwobi," Mutiso suggested.

"And he will also have a great influence on African players who play abroad to choose to play for their countries in Africa than in Europe. By doing this, they will help their teams challenge for top honours in the continent and the world as well."